A few friends of mine were having a party for me celebrating my first role in National television show. A voice chirped in, “Your a true overnight success Alan”. I asked what she was talking about and had to continually remind her that I had just spent the last 2 years working full time in the industry and had another ten behind it in a parallel industry. “But still Alan You an overnight success”.
Its sad but this is the general thinking of most people today, that success is given, not earned. I meet so many people that want to live their dreams, what ever they may be, but simply refuse to earn them. Fewer than 1% of us will ever live our true lives the way we want.
My dreams and aspirations are many but most people in my life are so fixated on the end result that they have missed the journey all together. The process is the most important part of life.
Every journey begins the day that you commit to it and without 100% commitment you will never fully realize that journey. It wasn’t that many years ago that I made more money in a month than most people make in a year. It didn’t take long for me to realize it was an illusion, its cost was measured in the best years of my life and its benefits and rewards were little in comparison to the cost.
I was addicted to wealth and everything that it offered. When I decided to walk a different path I didn’t just buy a book on minimalism and call myself transformed. Like a drug addict you will never be free of your addictions until you can completely walk away. My goal was to learn to respect money and wealth and to acquire it under my own terms. I don’t seek employment I create it. I don’t seek adventure, I live it.
There is a cost in everything we do. My journey into simple living is moving on two step two, wealth creation. I’ve never seen wealth as a bad thing but something that must be carefully monitored and channeled. In the next month or so my new wealth building journey will begin. I have always told people if you want to be wealthy you need to learn to give money away. As of today money has almost no meaning to me making if easy to pass on to the needy.
One day soon someone will utter these words to me,” sure but its easy for you Alan your wealthy”. Today is my 7 year anniversary with walking away from everything and also of my first blog post on a little old blog called Midlife Cry SOS.
What ever your dream is, today is the day start that journey so grab the bull by the tail and look him square in the eye.
Heading towards the station …
Tucked away in our subconscious minds is an idyllic vision. We see ourselves on a long, long trip that almost spans the continent. We’re traveling by passenger train, and out the windows we drink in the passing scene of cars on nearby highways, of children waving at a crossing, of cattle grazing on a distant hillside, of smoke pouring from a power plant, of row upon row of corn and wheat, of flatlands and valleys, of mountains and rolling hills, of biting winter and blazing summer and cavorting spring and docile fall.
But uppermost in our minds is the final destination. On a certain day at a certain hour we will pull into the station. There sill be bands playing, and flags waving. And once we get there so many wonderful dreams will come true. So many wishes will be fulfilled and so many pieces of our lives finally will be neatly fitted together like a completed jigsaw puzzle. How restlessly we pace the aisles, damning the minutes for loitering … waiting, waiting, waiting, for the station.
However, sooner or later we must realize there is no one station, no one place to arrive at once and for all. The true joy of life is the trip. The station is only a dream. It constantly outdistances us.
“When we reach the station, that will be it !” we cry. Translated it means, “When I’m 18, that will be it ! When I buy a new 450 SL Mercedes Benz, that will be it ! When I put the last kid through college, that will be it ! When I have paid off the mortgage, that will be it ! When I win a promotion, that will be it ! When I reach the age of retirement, that will be it ! I shall live happily ever after !”
Unfortunately, once we get it, then it disappears. The station somehow hides itself at the end of an endless track.
“Relish the moment” is a good motto, especially when coupled with Psalm 118:24: “This is the day which the Lord hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.” It isn’t the burdens of today that drive men mad. Rather, it is regret over yesterday or fear of tomorrow. Regret and fear are twin thieves who would rob us of today.
So, stop pacing the aisles and counting the miles. Instead, climb more mountains, eat more ice cream, go barefoot oftener, swim more rivers, watch more sunsets, laugh more and cry less. Life must be lived as we go along. The station will come soon enough.
~Found as published in Dear Abby, The Station, By Robert J. Hastings